Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Meatballs just aren't glamourous.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I have continued to build up quite a list of recipes that I haven't written about. I always tell myself that I'm saving them for the proverbial rainy day, a day upon which I have no recipe to write about and thus must rely upon the reserve I've stored up.

This particular recipe is part of that store, but I've also waited for some time to include it because it's not exactly the most composed, fancy, or elaborate dish. It's just a good old-fashioned meatball sandwich. Which includes, as a key ingredient, Fritos. Yes, those crispy curls of salty corn goodness. The kind that I used to find at the concession stand at football games, doused in Wolf Brand chili and garnished with shredded cheddar (that would be a Frito pie, by the way). I'm not at all ashamed about this ingredient, however. I feel that the crushed chips lend an excellent texture and flavor to the meatballs and sauce. They truly do. And you should absolutely trust my opinion, because usually, I don't even like meatballs. Any sort of baked meat, actually-I loathe meatloaf. I do enjoy the meatball sub from Subway, but I think that might just be the fact that they've soaked into the tomato sauce for so long that I can barely taste the wretched "baked meat" flavor that I abhor.

Anyway, I came across this recipe in the No Recipe Zone section of my Every Day with Rachael Ray magazine. Silvana Nardone, an assistant editor always commands this feature, as well as a dessert spot, in the magazine, and I tend to enjoy her dishes. Despite the aforementioned dislike of meatballs, I decided to give the recipe a shot-the Fritos intrigued me, and the addition of black beans and pepper jack cheese were also major selling points.

The subs were DELICIOUS. By far better than any sandwich one could pick up from Subway or Quizno's. The chili sauce was hearty and spicy, the meatballs juicy and scrumptious. My SH and I ate them for several nights, and I can easily see doubling the recipe for the sauce in order to have plenty left over to freeze. I'm sure it would also taste good tossed with pasta or served over white rice. Give it a shot, and don't think twice about the Fritos.

Chili Meatball Subs, adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray, May 2009

1 pound ground beef

1 onion, one-half finely chopped, one-half thinly sliced

1 cup corn chips, such as Fritos, crushed

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1 tablespoon chili powder

Salt and pepper

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

One 28-ounce can chopped tomatoes

One 15-ounce can black beans

6 sandwich rolls, split halfway and toasted

2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese (about 8 ounces)

In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, chopped onion, 1/4 cup crushed corn chips, the egg, chili powder, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 cup water. Shape into 1-inch balls.
2. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sliced onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and the remaining 3/4 cup crushed corn chips and bring to a boil. Add the meatballs to the sauce, cover and simmer until the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes. Stir in the beans and cook just until heated through, about 5 minutes.
3. Preheat the broiler. Using a slotted spoon, spoon the chili meatballs and sauce into the toasted rolls, then top with the cheese. Broil until the cheese is melted, about 2 minutes.


David and Abi said...

I have my mother-in-law's meatball recipe and I make about 50 at a time and keep them in the freezer with my frozen sauce. they are great max foods too.

The White House said...

Yum. I would just love if you would cook for me.

Btw, I had a nightmare last night that I went to Camp Meeting without packing. So I had to wear the same thing all week. Crisis.